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Why Facebook is Separating Workplace from Facebook Site


Recently, Facebook announced that it is separating Workplace from main Facebook site to appease business customers. Read on to know the reasons behind this move…

Way back in October 2016, Facebook launched Workplace after two years of beta testing. The platform is specifically created for businesses, meaning that instead of interacting with friends, Workplace users will interact with colleagues. Last week, Facebook revealed a security breach in September this year affected around 50 million users. The hackers stole basic information, including names and phone numbers. Facebook’s investigators have been probing the data breach since September 25 when it was discovered someone was downloading a large number of digital access tokens on the social network.

Facebook Inc. recently announced that collaborative platform Workplace which is run by Facebook is being isolated from the social network’s main site amid security concerns. Facebook decided to move its work version of the main platform to a separate domain in order to reassure businesses that the use of its services is secure. Workplace is expected to get its own site that will be available to consumers by 2019. Luke Taylor, product manager for Workplace by Facebook told CNBC that the new domain, Workplace.com, is now live as a marketing website. It is expected to go into use as a landing page for Workplace by Facebook customers sometime next year.

On September 28, the day that Facebook FB disclosed a security breach impacting millions of its users, the head of the Facebook’s upstart enterprise business reached out to Walmart WMT, a top customer, to assure it that its data had not been exposed. Walmart is a customer of Workplace by Facebook, a work version of the social network that companies pay for so their employees can communicate using Facebook-style features, such as private messaging, news feed posts and live streams. The service, which competes with Slack and other enterprise communications services, is used by 30,000 organizations, including Starbucks and Chevron, according to the most figures Facebook shared in October 2017.

In the September 28 communication, Julien Codorniou, the head of Workplace by Facebook, assured Clay Johnson, the enterprise chief information officer of Walmart, that steps were being taken to further separate Facebook’s enterprise business from its consumer services. Facebook told the company it was soon giving the Workplace by Facebook service its own web domain, according to Walmart vice president Joe Park. “The assurances we got were that data resides outside the consumer version of Facebook, and it’s starting from the top to bottom, where they’ll even change the domain name to reflect that,” Park said.

The domain change comes as some Workplace by Facebook customers have previously expressed security concern about the fact that the enterprise tool is hosted on the same domain as Facebook’s consumer business, Taylor said. Facebook has been informing clients about the domain shift one-on-one. “We have been in a position where even though we are separate from them, it’s a bit difficult to have that story when we are hosted on the Facebook.com domain,” Taylor told CNBC. “This is something that we want to do from a brand point of view but also something that I think gives our customers more trust in the product itself.”

Facebook expects to start using the domain with new customers at first and then help existing clients migrate over, Taylor said. We’ll be working with our customers to make sure that they migrate at a pace that makes sense for them,” Taylor said.


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